Friday, May 4, 2012

Adobe Lightroom 4

I was really stoked after collecting my package at the distributor in Sunway Damansara.
This might be old news, but it's been a month since I bought myself Adobe Lightroom 4. I've been testing out the beta version for a while and once the full version was released I couldn't believe how affordable it was. I got it for RM 505 through The Network Hub Sdn Bhd, who is one of Adobe's Gold Distributor as listed on Adobe's website.

What I like about Adobe Lightroom 4.
Although you can be content if you still have Lightroom 3 at hand, having Lightroom 4 does give you some edge in processing your images.
  1. Better shadows & highlights rescue than LR3. I shoot a lot of high key portraits on a white cyc. It's easier to clean-up the highlights in LR4.
  2. More options on the adjustment tools (gradient and brush tool). More control on highlights, colour, saturation, clarity and almost all of the basic editing variables are also available on the adjustment tools to be tweaked, hence more control.
  3. Superb noise reduction. I shot an ISO 2500 image and it did wonders in cleaning up the noise.
  4. More stable tethering than LR3.
If you're interested to learn more about Adobe Lightroom 4, why don't you attend "The Ultimate Lightroom Workflow" , a 3-day workshop by Jared Platt all the way, LIVE from Seattle via the internet, from 14-JUN till 16-JUN. It's FREE!

More info at:

Recent Tearsheets

I've been guilty of not updating my blog for almost a year. 2011 seemed like a bleep from the timeline. I've been really productive in 2011 that I didn't have time to keep you guys posted on what I did. Therefore, for this year, my aim is to disseminate information as quickly and as accurately as possible.
Here are my recent published work for Time Out KL and Time Out Malaysia magazines.

I've been meaning to scan these prints but it was consuming too much of my time. I needed to share these and in the end I took these quick shots with my mobile phone. Not too shabby I suppose. Probably I'll scan the tearsheets in another time to replace these. I found out that blogging shouldn't consume much of my time, because it's about sharing as fast as possible, so here they are, for your viewing pleasure. Thanks for reading!

Here's Time Out KL March 2012 Issue. I shot the cover!

I shot this cover for Time Out KL March 2012 issue!

Been going around after dark to shoot these fantastic bars around KL.

Here's Time Out KL April 2012 Issue.

Didn't shoot this cover. :)
I loved this assignment. We've got some pretty amazing unique boutiques around Kuala Lumpur.

Shot the lovely Nina Hidayat at our studio for this section.
Time Out Malaysia Restaurants, Bars & Clubs Guide 2012
Wished I had shot the cover, but I didn't. This is a reference to the issue.

Lovely food around KL. You'll be surprised.
Time Out Malaysia Shopping Guide 2012
Cover for issue reference.
This assignment would be one of the most exciting assignments that I got. Partially because I just got a Sigma 30mm f1.4 and used it first on this assignment. The lens produced such depth and clarity I really loved the outcome of it. The focal length is nice too. I got to work in tight and wide spaces with just this lens. Loved the angle of view. It was so pleasing to the eye. Several wide angle shots were taken with the Canon 10-20mm on the 7D.
Now this is one of the most interesting assignment I got. Love shooting this one.

The 30mm f.14 is one of my favorite lens for this assignment.

Loved the photos on the right page of this spread. Such shallow depth-of-field creates more dimension to the photos.

I bet you thought that these images are from the ambient lights. Nope. I filled the ambient with a bit of flash from my speedlight with attached CTO (colour temperature orange) gels. When I light, I try my best to blend and camouflage the flash with the ambient. This was and is my challenge.

Here's another section in this issue. The products and talents were shot in our studio except the furnitures which were shot on-location at VIVA Homes, Cheras. Some of the small items were shot by Stacy Liu, Time Out's in-house lovely photographer.

I thought I took a close-up of this section to show my photo credits. Nice :)

Path to Success

Recently I've been searching for some answers on how to break away from a plateau. I can say that we've all meet successful people who we look up to and we've probably asked "How did you get where you are today?".

Most of the time they'll tell us their story beginning from when they were rock bottom till how they gained success. What I've found out is that none of them really shared the critical "breaking point" or shall I say, the moment they broke away from their downturn. I don't know why, but perhaps they'd like to keep it a secret or simply don't know how to tell.

Well, recently I've done some digging through several successful people in their respective industry and found out these fundamental key to breaking the plateau. If you don't understand what I mean by plateau, what I'm trying to illustrate is how you can increase your stagnant earnings by adapting a few method.

I've burst my maximum humanly hours possible in a day for work and feel that there's not enough hours in a day. Therefore, if this is my yield per day, how on earth am I going to increase my earnings when I've maxed out the amount of hours I can spend working in a day?

OK, here's what I learnt:
There's no shortcut to success.
The answer is just:
  1. work harder
  2. make savings and finally 
  3. invest
Here's some explanation, working backwards.

In the end, the only way to maximise our earnings is by investment, be it personal or business. An investment would be the only way that you can be at two or more places in one time. Since there's only 24-hrs in a day, consider and investment is making copies of yourself working as much as you're working right now and earning for you. An investment could also be diversification of business. It could also be an "opportunity". Simple concept isn't it?

You can only invest when you have extra resource. This resource comes from savings. Now, how do we get savings? You can get savings by working hard and keeping your expenses manageable.

Work Hard
This is the only way to build your savings. Some people say work smart. That's true, but working smart is already part of the plan, which is our end goal to invest. At the end of the day, initially you do need to work hard to get extra resource to generate savings, consequently leading to an investment. Work hard could also mean consistently improving yourself, your skills to be better and the best you can be at what you do.

Now that you know this, try it out. There's no secret to success but to put your sweat to it and work hard.

Go on, it's no secret. I hope this will change your life. Share this. :)